PERFECT PARTY: Katie Grand’s independently operated Perfect Magazine threw a party during London Fashion Week with By Far and Ant-Agency to celebrate the launch of the magazine’s second issue, out Monday.
Guests including Karen Elson, Marc Jacobs, Georgia May Jagger, Alexa Chung, Iris Law, Paloma Faith and Kitty Spencer with twin sisters Amelia and Eliza partied with some of London’s most prolific fashion designers such as Christopher Kane, Erdem Morialoglu, Harris Reed, Saul Nash, Bianca Saunders, Chet Lo and Connor Ives at Decimo, at The Standard hotel in King’s Cross.
Grand and Bryan Yambao aka Bryanboy, who both wore Balenciaga, welcomed the guests with cocktails made with Cîroc vodka, Don Julio Blanco tequila, Johnnie Walker Black Label whisky, and canapés including mini beef burgers, fries and vegan hot dogs.
The new issue, priced at 35 pounds, features stories on celebrities such as Cate Blanchett, Kaia Gerber, Miley Cyrus, Hailey Bieber, Anjelica Huston, Dakota Johnson, Glenn Martens, Lizzo and Emily Ratajkowski.
“We wanted to tackle the idea of celebrity in an age of mass surveillance — specifically, how our relationship with public figures has changed when the details of our own lives are increasingly accessible to people we don’t know,” Grand wrote in the editor’s letter.
Reflecting on the surveillance theme, Sølve Sundsbø followed Georgia Palmer around London City Airport on CCTV. Nikolai von Bismarck set his camera to night vision and monitors the nocturnal goings-on in a park near his home, while Steve Mackey shot Ratajkowski being followed by paparazzi on a night out at the cinema. — TIANWEI ZHANG
The Italian company is taking part in Milan Fashion Week, kicking off Tuesday, to unveil its digital retail project, which will officially debut in the next few weeks.
The brand’s Milan flagship on Corso Vittorio Emanuele II will be transformed into a mixed-media experience, teasing the look and feel of the store in the metaverse. The shop has been covered in pink paint — a nod to the brand’s colorful aesthetics and to the immersive experience the digital shop is expected to offer. The new store set-up will remain for four weeks.
“We wanted to take the immersive experience upside down, reproducing in physical retail the same emotional ecosystem that the virtual store in the metaverse will have,” said Massimo Renon, chief executive officer of Benetton Group. “Anyone stepping into our Milan store in the next few weeks will take a deep dive into a mix of physical reality and digital connection, against a backdrop of creativity, colors and sounds,” he added.
Antonio Patrissi, Benetton Group’s chief digital officer, touted the company’s omnichannel approach in expanding into the metaverse. Digital customers will be offered gaming opportunities, each coming with a store credit reward in the form of a QR-code, which they can use for their physical purchases in Benetton’s retail network.
“Our goal is to create a bridge between present and future, real and virtual, through an immersive brand experience, that is closer to the language of younger generations,” Patrissi offered.
Benetton tapped five Italian personalities and TikTokers for a dedicated activation called Play Change, for which the talents will share their personal stories of change and reinvention. — MARTINO CARRERA
The Danish brand, among the world’s largest jewelry companies, will set up shops-in-shop at Macy’s. Five locations opened in late 2021 including Dallas, Houston and Atlanta. Now, the companies are planning an additional 28 outposts to open before the end of 2022.
Pandora noted in a statement that the partnership is part of a campaign to “increase market share and double revenue in the U.S. compared to 2019.” The U.S. is Pandora’s biggest market.
“As one of the nation’s premier retailers, Pandora values Macy’s as a strong partner to increase brand accessibility in the U.S. and accelerate our footprint growth,” said Luciano Rodembusch, president of Pandora North America. “We share a customer-focused culture, and we are confident we will continue to achieve our ambitious growth goals in the market through this partnership aligned to our strategic network expansion efforts.”
Jeff Gennette, chief executive officer of Macy’s Inc., added: “Macy’s is a destination for jewelry purchases from affordable to high end. We are thrilled to partner with Pandora to expand our jewelry assortment and offer customers more exciting hand-finished jewelry and specialty options to help them enable their personal style.”
At the WWD CEO Summit in November, Rodembusch outlined how Pandora planned to refresh its product assortment and retail experience in order to reach a new generation of shoppers.
“We need to bring freshness to the brand and a good example of that is when we start to talk to Gen Z, we need that freshness. Especially when you want to talk to a younger generation, you need to be more attuned to what’s happening in the moment. You need to be much faster so you can create very fast,” he said of new lines like Pandora Me. The jeweler is also spearheading improvements to its e-commerce channels to “stir emotion,” and relay a sense of brand history and handcraft. — MISTY WHITE SIDELL
ANNIVERSARY ISSUES: In the midst of its 75th anniversary celebration, Talbots has again joined forces with Dress for Success.
For what is its eighth annual collaboration with the organization that aims to help women achieve their full potential professionally and personally, the retailer has created a capsule collection with messages of empowerment. Thus far, Talbots has raised more than $8 million to help women return to the workforce and to get back on their feet.
The feel-good sweatshirts are also meant to honor the women who have benefited from Dress for Success’ services. The words that were chosen to be imprinted on the sweatshirts were inspired by the multitude of stories that Talbots staffers have heard through the years of its association with the nonprofit. Available online through March 20, the three $70 styles are offered in blue, pink and white with such words as “Strength,” “Powerful,” “Determined,” “Hopeful,” “Confident,” “Inspire” and “Kind.” A blue sweatshirt with “Inspire” is being sold in select stores. Talbots’ senior vice president of brand marketing Bill Miller said the retailer is proud to support Dress for Success for the eighth year and to “continue to help women, who have been impacted during the pandemic.”
From the third quarter of 2019 to the third quarter of 2021, the number of women in the labor force without high school diplomas decreased by 12.8 percent compared to the 4.9 percent decline by comparably educated men, according to the Pew Center for Research. The gender pay gap remains steady. On average, men are working fewer hours in paid jobs since 2019 but women’s hours are unchanged.
The Talbots x Dress for Success collection also plays into the momentum the specialty store chain has had with sweatshirts and sweaters that carry inspiring words or statements. “They are always a success and a big seller,” a company spokesperson said, noting how the limited-run line celebrates the inspirational stories and accomplishments of all of the Dress for Success women and how the retailer is confident the words should resonate with all customers. “With the current casual state of dressing and knowing the world has changed, we knew that our customers already love our sweatshirts and therefore, they would embrace the ‘Inspire’ collection.” the spokesperson said.
Timed to coincide with International Women’s History Month, Talbots is trying to spark a shared conversation not just with existing customers, but also potential new ones through its #WhoInspiresYou campaign. As part of this “ Women Helping Women” initiative and to try to create a buzz about the Inspire collection, Talbots is encouraging shoppers, employees, female community leaders and lifestyle influencers to post images of themselves wearing the sweatshirts and to explain who inspires them.
The partnership with Dress for Success offers different ways for shoppers to get involved. From March 10 to 14, shoppers can bring in gently worn work attire and accessories that will be given to the organization. From March 3 through April 3, Talbots will accept monetary donations for Dress for Success at its cash registers in stores. During its “Shop for a Cause Week” that will run March 7 to 14, consumers will receive 25 percent off entire in-store and online purchases with 10 percent of net proceeds benefiting DFS in addition to the 30 percent earmarked for the special collection. — ROSEMARY FEITELBERG